Social Enterprise

Another firing over Facebook comments: Lawsuit pending

A new legal case tests the reach of social media policies, as the National Labor Relations Board contests a firing over Facebook comments.

As long as people continue to think of Facebook as their personal diary (a personal diary viewable by everyone from your sixth grade best friend to your dentist), there are going to be problems. And, consequently, there are going to be lawsuits, because that's just how people roll these days.

Take the case of Dawnmarie Souza, an employee of American Medical Response of Connecticut. After a dispute with her supervisor, Souza, on her own time and not at work, posted disparaging remarks about him on her Facebook page. Some of her coworkers then posted comments supporting Ms. Souza's criticism of the supervisor. American Medical then fired Ms. Souza because she violated company policy against depicting the company in any way on social media websites without permission.

Since American Medical had a written policy, the case seemed pretty straightforward. That is, until the Hartford regional office of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) stepped in, claiming Souza was wrongfully dismissed because the Facebook activity can be considered a "concerted action." (Concerted actions are federally protected as part of the right to organize labor in order to discuss unionization of a company.) Kind of like a high-tech Norma Rae.

(OK, now I have a mental image of Souza standing on a table in a hot, crowded plan holding up her iPad with the word "Strike" on it. I guess you'll have to see the movie to get that one.)

The NLRB's position will also most likely be tested against case law that has interpreted what employees can be fired for when they're not on the job. It will be an interesting, precedent-testing case.

About

Toni Bowers is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and is the award-winning blogger of the Career Management blog. She has edited newsletters, books, and web sites pertaining to software, IT career, and IT management issues.

226 comments
leenee647
leenee647

People are putting to much of their personal business on facebook. You shouln't be talking about your job on facebook not knowing who may read it. IT'S ENTERTAINMENT.

jperick.mbei
jperick.mbei

Greetings. Like General DeGaule reportedly told Algerians wanting their independence right NOW and the French wanting Algeria to remain or become an extension of France: "I understand you", I would say to those those who defend the firing and those calling it "censorship", I understand you. However, whenever we face a situation like this one, it seems wiser that we approach with caution. What do you do when someone attack you and throw sand into your eyes? Do you blindly counterattack like a bull, or do you first try to clear your eyes, ensure that you can see before responding to the attack? A few observations worth making: (1). An employee at a private organization is not a congresswoman. Even House Representatives and Senators have their own "internal rules" they are required to follow. And I think that anyone who breaks these rules can be subjected to some kind of sanction. (2). Freedom--and with it, freedom of speech does not mean "anarchy". Now, a few questions I would like the experts to answer if they please and choose to: (1). What does the Constitution say relative to our Freedom of Speech and the rights and responsibilities of employers and their employees? (2). Had Ms. Souza used all the avenues offered by her employer before posting these "disparaging remarks" on Facebook? If yes, what was the documented outcome? I do not know anything about the case other than what I read here (I am quoting the section that most strikes me): "After a dispute with her supervisor, Souza, on her own time and not at work, posted disparaging remarks about him on her Facebook page. Some of her coworkers then posted comments supporting Ms. Souza?s criticism of the supervisor. American Medical then fired Ms. Souza because she violated company policy against depicting the company in any way on social media websites without permission". If I must take the above comments a face value, it appears that Ms. Souza had an argument (a dispute) with her supervisor and, subsequently using "her own time" posted disparaging remarks on her Facebook about her supervisor. OK, the issue here should not be whether she used her own time or not. I think that there is a special context here. Here is how I see the situation: (1). Ms Souza knew about the company's policy. It is likely that she may have signed the policy document (she would have strong case though, if her employer never had her sign the policy document). (2). Not withstanding her knowledge of the company's policy, she decided to post "disparaging" comments about her "employer" (remember, in this case, it is no longer about the "supervisor" but the "business entity"), a corporation on a public forum. It might look like in so doing, Ms. Souza had shot her own foot. Because such negative comments are likely to cost any business its reputation and subsequently, customers. I honestly doubt if Ms. Souza and the Union have a strong case here. I also doubt if this can fit into the frame of whistle blowing policy. Even then, Ms. Souza may need to to provide a factual evidence that she had brought the case to the attention of her supervisor, the supervisor or her supervisor, and the company's EEO before going public. Bottom line is, as employees, we have obligations and rights. As long as you work for a company, you are bound by the company's body of policies are are expected to abide by these policies even in a situation where you may feel a victim of some mistreatment. You have the right to (1) use the company's internal complaint resolution mechanism, (2) quit and (3) take a legal action. Burt going out to publicly trash the company that pays you before you quit is reckless, professionally immature and unwise. I am not condoning censorship. What I am suggesting is that people use professionalism, wisdom and/or caution whenever they find themselves in such a situation. At best, seek advice before undertaking any potentially costly action. Never mix politics and your employment. Like a British saying goes, at best "look, before you leap".

BlueCollarCritic
BlueCollarCritic

"Worried about the recession? Not me. If we do get to the point where we can't finagle the books to make a profit we can simply to to the goverment for a bailout. Besides, I rather like the tougher economy, makes it easier to keep the slaves in line and force them to do as we like. Where else are they going to get a job if they don't do as we say? ~ Any Major Executive of any International Corporation"

Tiger-Pa
Tiger-Pa

I used to work for AMR where management and supervisors alike were always a bunch of loose cannons that showed little respect for it's employees. I was let go after six years as an IT tech that was listed as exempt on the payroll. I worked sixty hour workweeks without OT pay. I was receiving entry level salary. My managers didn't even know the difference between being salaried and being exempt. Ironically my director didn't like my attitude of speaking up for myself. I hope Ms Souza gets a bundle. All I got was my unemployment check. I'm still unemployed after four years... But happy I don't work for AMR.

jkameleon
jkameleon

... should be good enough reason to fire someone, no matter what he posted in there.

ndean.jones
ndean.jones

Actions Taken after the time "on board" are not the right of employers to govern. Trying to rule every part of your staffs' life will result in anarchy, treat your employed crew as family and let them have a life of thier own.

TaDaH
TaDaH

she was well within her right to be fired.

seven2seven
seven2seven

"...standing on a table in a hot, crowded plan..." Should it read "plant"? Yes, the story was that interesting...can I get my time refund?

Bronte G
Bronte G

I wonder if this supervisor is good enough to hold down HER job any more. And I wonder if the unhappy employee was doing a good enough job in the first place. If both were doing their jobs well, it seems that legal action by the management is just another example of bad interpersonal relationships,and the business is in need of some counselling in that. Why do so many people think that handing their problems to a lawyer will fix them up? Is that really The American Way?

andiestwo5
andiestwo5

I'm your boss and I own you. and if you tell the world how much of a butt head I am,,YOUR FIRED!! A Job is more than a way to make a living,,For most its sacrifice and they put in hard work for the Employer and yet the Employer only thinks of self enrichment. There is NO consideration for the Employee or their life. I think this should end! Don't waste your future working for someone who don't care about YOU!! :)

g01d4
g01d4

I'm assuming that the remarks can't be generalized to cover the company per se. Also for those who don't like censorship - try harassment

mwclarke1
mwclarke1

Free Speech, or we should even consider this a free nation anymore and just ear up those old stale documents(Declaration and constitution), Although sometimes I think they have been already ! People should be careful about what they say, when they say it and where. But say what we must within reason. And that is as long as not using a company resource and time to do so, can say anything about anyone needed. Now, what you say and how may warrant a libel suit if you are not in the right and I think based on what I see with this case is where this needs to be and the Company should have not taken any stance unless their name/product was slandered directly somehow, then again that is another libel suit, I have not enough information to know if the Company had any grounds to fire her based on her not using company resources or time ? But since we do live in the US, People do have a right to express their concerns as a matter of free speech as long as do not trifle upon others rights as a whole.

chaynes33
chaynes33

Looks like you have opened a can of worms. It should be self censorship and that takes on a new meaning. Keeping something private doesn't belong on or in a chat room or social network where everyone around the world can read. Knowing when & where to post will keep you out of trouble. It seems to me that no one wants to take personal responsibility for their actions & tend to blame everyone else. "One finger points at me while three others point back at you."

jasondlnd
jasondlnd

The Internet is written in ink. Writing disparaging remarks about your employer and posting it online, even though it is off the clock and using your own equipment can get you fired. Why? Because your employer can fire you for any reason at any time. Writing disparaging remarks about your employer and them posting them online gives your employer a reason to fire you, even if you are a model employee at work. It is PERFECTLY LEGAL for an employer to do so, even if there are no clear cut rules or written employee policies regarding such action. Employers typically monitor what their employees post on social media websites. There is a reason I'm not on Facebook, Myspace, or Twitter :)

rick.
rick.

------------------------------------ redacted

BlueCollarCritic
BlueCollarCritic

As much as I hate the idea of yet more legislation (we already have way too much legislation) there needs to be some protection of the employee from their employer for actions taken outside the job; the job being the time for which the employee is working to be paid by the employer. Had this person done this 20 years ago and did it sending a letter to one or more friends and her employer got hold of said letter and them fired her the employer would be in big trouble. The digital age has opened up to the world what used to be private conversations. Too often corrupt managers and supervisors in larger businesses are able to coerce those under them thru all kinds of threats and now they are able to more easily gather info on these employees thanks to social media. There should be some kind of law preventing employers from firing employees based on information gathered from sources outside the workplace and that are not directly associated with the employers business. This way an employee could speak freely on their website but if they posted negative comments on something like a conference related blog (a conference or event that the employer sends the employee to or is associated with) they would then be accountable to the employer. Just because the social media makes it easier for employers to spy on what their employees are saying and doing outside of the job that does not mean the employer should be able to use that to their advantage. If an employee goes to a site directly linked to the employer then the case can be made they are directly targeting the employer and therefore accountable for what they say. If however the employee is doing this on their personal site be it Facebook or elsewhere then it should be protected. If the employee had been somewhere like a bowling alley and her supervisor just happened to be there and over heard her say something about the supervisor to those with her (not knowing her supervisor is there) should he supervisor then be able to fire her because he did not like what she said? NO.

Sul52
Sul52

If you work for a company that you are unhappy with, and unhappy or displeased with policy or supervision, you should first take through the process within the company. If that doesn't satisfy you then look for other employment. If you verbally run down the company (which can harm the public perception of that company) the company and you (the employee) are better off parting company. This has nothing to do with free speach. It has to do with common sense and free association. The company (management) is also free to choose whom they associate with. And if you choose to exercise you free speech be prepared to pay a price. Be courageous, find new associations.

MariaMon
MariaMon

Just thinking aloud...if employees can publicly post disparaging remarks on FB about their employers...on their own time, of course...why shouldn't employers be able to publicly post on an employee's poor work performance on a company FB site as well? I am betting that most people would cry foul over this idea because of the potential damage it could do to an employee's future employment. (No matter if the remarks are true or not...) I am an at-will employee. I am not management and can be fired at any time. In order to work for my employer, I agreed to dress and act a certain way. My employer has every right to demand high standards from its employees...just as I have the right to choose not to work for them if I don't like their rules. Should I get drunk and run naked down my neighborhood road and it end up on YouTube, I will certainly expect to get fired...irregardless of whether I was on my own time.

wayneleduc56
wayneleduc56

What happened to the first amendment rigts of the a person, to me that was what she was exercising

steve.holland
steve.holland

One may say whatever they want. But, a job is a privilege not a right. As long as the subject matter is not protected (and complaining about one's boss is not constitutionally or legally protected speech), a company can, and should be allowed, to fire anyone for any reason.

Arcturus909
Arcturus909

While the comment I am about to make is only potentially applicable to the case at hand (since I don't know the person, didn't see their post, and don't have all the details) I want to take this opportunity to rant a little. This has been building for awhile. I am seeing far too many people using Facebook not as a "personal diary" so much as a place to express negative feelings about other people (whether using names or not - usually not) instead of dealing with the person they have the problem with. Aside from trying to garner sympathy, the only reason for posting something like this seems to me to be - letting the person know you have a problem with them without allowing a confrontation. (Perhaps allowing a non-face-to-face flamewar if they are your "friend") Maybe I've just got too many "Passive aggressive" friends. :)

wjholtjr
wjholtjr

For all you folks who feel that employees have the right to speak freely about their employer, their supervisors, etc. on FaceBook because it is their free speech right to do so, then how about extending the same priviledge to the employer. Are you okay if we post about your outrageous behavior our on company Facebook page? Sample Post: Carol Y angered a customer today and cost us a $100,000 client. Carol has a temper that occasionally gets out of control and it really hurt the company this time. We've tried working with her but she has an arrogant attitude and it seems she has no plans for changing. She is now on probation and we hope she'll mess up one more time so that we can get her out of here. Her co-workers are sick of her, she drags down the whole department, and those of us in management can't wait for her to mess up so that the paperwork will be complete and she will be gone. Sample Post: John X failed his random drug test today. Want to guess what he is using? Doesn't matter. He's fired. Do you think Carol and John would sit back and allow those comments saying, "It would be censorship for me to expect them to not say those things about me."? If employers must allow employees to say whatever, whenever, and its all about not censoring their speech, then why not afford the same right to the employer?

taylorstan
taylorstan

Every company has employees that are not happy. They are going to express that any and every way possible. They will say it to friends and families face to face, over the phone, email, and shockingly yes on the internet. They will tell complete strangers the same thing if it it is brought up on conversation. Companies/Employers need to get over the idea that employees are not going to complain. Start using it as a tool for figure out what is the issue at hand. Obviously, somthing is not meshing between this supervisor and the people working under them. Especially if other workers chimed in on the post. My question is, why haven't the other employees that posted a responce to the post fired also? Would that not also be a violation of this "policy"?

Paymeister
Paymeister

Let me illustrate a case from a job I held in a previous decade: I was enjoying a pleasant theological discussion with co-workers over lunch when a young lady said, "So you're saying that without Christ, my boyfriend is going to hell?" My reply was along the lines of, "Well, I don't know that I would cut to the chase quite like that, but, yes, he would." The girlfriend accepted this as a part of the discussion (in fact I was speaking out of concern for her and the boyfriend rather than rancor). But another employee walking past overheard my words, took offense, and reported me to the director. I was called into his office and told I could not say such things. I responded, "Well, Sir, I understand that you have full authority to fire me for violating your orders, and I will do the best I can to keep my mouth shut on such topics. But if I honestly feel that God would have me speak, I will go ahead and do so. IfI do, I recognize full well that it will likely cost me my job." He blinked, but saw that I was actually not challenging his authority at all. Rather, I was recognizing and accepting that the consequences he outlined were indeed within his authority should I act to violate his orders. It amazes me that folks don't understand honest "gotchas". If you speed and a cop catches you, why not recognize that you took a risk and got popped? He won that round: it was a legit ticket. Fighting it, frankly, would be a form of lying. Here, her contesting the firing says that she lied when she signed the company rules or she's denying that she made the posts. Seems an honest 'gotcha' to me.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Spoken like a true bottom feeder who feels he will never succeed beyond his current level of employment. Clever!

joncraft
joncraft

might be "carved in stone", because ink will eventually fade.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

First of all, where I live there are employment laws that would see this as wrongful dismissal, in some cases such as this, even after losing your job the employer can be made to pay you until you find suitable replacement employment. However, "The digital age has opened up to the world what used to be private conversations" Once published online, it becomes property of a public domain. Facebook is like posting your thoughts comments and actions, at the bus stop. If you defame the company or represent them in a detrimental way, they have every right to fire you. You have freedom of speech of course, but it doesn't apply here as this isn't political and they can drop you like a brick. If you leave a trail of information that would be enough to get fired over, then your actions are simply unacceptable for your employer's image and they can warrant dismissal due to misrepresentation of teh company. However, if it is you and a few friends getting drunk and dancing, with NO reference, relation or anything else that identifies the employer there isn't much they can fire you for, unless such activities in your free time go against company policy, such as alcohol or drugs in your blood. "There should be some kind of law preventing employers from firing employees based on information gathered from sources outside the workplace and that are not directly associated with the employers business." There is, a privacy law, but when your information is public it must be restrained from association, in the sense of mentioning your employers name, wearing a company shirt in photos etc. as long as you aren't representing them and are not associated with them in any way, any half arsed lawyer will see it thrown out of court. Again not sure how it works there but in Canada you would counter sue for wrongful dismissal and can be paid until you find 'suitable' replacement work. [i] "Just because the social media makes it easier for employers to spy on what their employees are saying and doing outside of the job that does not mean the employer should be able to use that to their advantage."[/i] If you are caught bad mouthing the company at the local bar and can be associated with them, they can fire you, why not via other public forums? [i]If however the employee is doing this on their personal site be it Facebook or elsewhere then it should be protected."[/i] Unwarranted defamation is grounds for legal action, whether online or anywhere else when company revenue can be effected. [i]"If the employee had been somewhere like a bowling alley and her supervisor just happened to be there and over heard her say something about the supervisor to those with her (not knowing her supervisor is there) should he supervisor then be able to fire her because he did not like what she said? NO.[/i] Yes, and they always have been able to. It is defamation of character, a little harder to legally work with compared to defaming the company directly but the supervisor is not obligated to keep you on for any reason, especially if you don't like him/her and have been openly talking about it in public. How do you arrive at the opinion that if you shoot your mouth off about an employer in public he should not be able to fire you for it?

MariaMon
MariaMon

digital age also warrants some form of rights to employers. If an employee starts a website called www.IHateMyEmployer_SomeCompanyName.com and then publicly posts disparaging remarks digitally for the whole world to see, I believe this would be the same as taking out a newspaper ad trashing them. If you want to disparage your employer on FB, use common sense and apply your "filter" and make sure your profile only allows views by your friends and family.

mcswan454
mcswan454

And at the end of the day, having read all posts, and posting myself earlier, I come to one final conclusion: Sometimes you get what you deserve. Sometimes you deserve what you get. These are NOT necessarily the same thing. We've collectively abrogated responsibility for our behavior, raising our children, etc. Re-read above, and this conversation needs go no further. All of us understand where I'm going with this. We've seen it looking in the mirror as well as on the street. Sometimes you get what you deserve. Sometimes you deserve what you get. M.

dave.g.johnson
dave.g.johnson

Part of the problem is our common failure to accept that we need to be part of a civil society. Rants to friends are one thing (and their tolerance is part of what makes friends valuable), but public rants are just rude behavior. And, sadly, remarks on the web transcend space and time. I just came across some quite vicious remarks made by a high school girl about a fellow student - everyone is clearly identified, and still part of the community. The post was seven years old. This person is now 24, married with two children. Is she the same person she was then? I hope not, and even if she is, would she want anyone to know. And what about the object of her venom?

schmidtd
schmidtd

You do know your employer or boss CAN do that, right? Unless it is slander (as in you stand in front of a judge and explain how it is untrue and hurt you), or information prohibited by law from being revealed. Free speech is really for all. Companies typically don't risk it because they don't want a slander suit that can cost resources and tarnish brands. But that is a choice of the company, just as it is a choice of most employees. I have no idea what the employee said, it may well have been bad enough to warrant this. Let me just suggest the following, this is a valid area of discussion in contract negotiations.

taylorstan
taylorstan

You can terminate those employees for financial loss reasons and violation of the company drug policy. However could I fire you because you invested money in a product that lost money so I didn't get my raise this year because of a pay freeze because that money was loss. No, so guess what I am going to complain about it to anyone that listens. And employers should realize that fact and get over it. The way the "economy" is, I think look at Fb account posts should not even be in the equation.

BobP64
BobP64

The problem with your examples are that there is a great deal of interpretation. In your first sample, just because Carol Y angered a customer, how do you know that it was that one single action that cost you the client? Typically, clients are not lost on a single word or sentence - business relationship are built up over time and everyone knows that individuals have bad days. I would think that a company would have a HARD TIME proving a direct cause and effect in this case, absent having the client actually come out and say that was indeed the case. In addition, there are extremely incendiary remarks there that show poor judgment and negative feelings (e.g. "we hope she'll mess up one more time", "those of us in management can't wait for her to mess up", etc) that there is no good basis for. Indeed, posting something like this may open the door for a suit from anyone in "management" who does NOT harbor similar feelings toward Carol, because THAT is putting them in a very negative light, and, may not be true! A company in general does not "hope" that employees mess up, otherwise they wouldn't have hired them. Even employees that have issues from time to time can be brought back into the fold. The 2nd one about John. Again, a posting about that without the emotion SHOULD work: John X failed his random drug test today and was not able to provide a suitable reason from a medical professional that would indicate use of an accepted prescription or OTC drug. We have therefore terminated him for cause. Companies do NOT have emotions, so, any posting from a company that shows emotion is actually the posting of an INDIVIDUAL. Granted, that individual may have the express permission to post for the company, but one should never assume that it is ok to substitute your own emotional content for that of an entire company, "management group", or whatever!

hthyne
hthyne

Thanks for posting this very rational & thoughtful message. You sound like a standup individual.

COM3
COM3

When will people realize that just because technology is available and everybody else is doing it, maybe it's not a best practice. The type is data is the hazardous waste of our generation.

olddognewtricks
olddognewtricks

Your understanding of your boss' likely response is crucial in this case. That of course is the result of having actual personal relationships with your co-workers. Given the facts as stated, I don't think it wise to concede that your boss has a right to order you not to discuss theological topics around the water cooler. 1) Your boss has a right to limit water cooler conversations, although reasonable bosses know that some amount of socializing on company time is helpful for morale and productive. But granted that some socializing is permitted, I don't see how he can reasonably require that you not preach the Gospel (gently) during that time. That is, he can't reasonably limit the topics of otherwise legal personal conversations at work. 2) It seems to me that your boss should have reprimanded the busybody, who seems to think it reasonable to be offended by an overheard remark not directed to him and which was best understood in the context of a conversation to which he was not otherwise privy. This is called troublemaking and your boss should not promote it by giving it credence.

jkameleon
jkameleon

Old-shcool Christianity: Your rulers and bosses are appointed by God. Now work and obey, you serf! Hinduism & Buddhism: You were born as a serf, because you did something terribly wrong in your previous life and incurred a bad Karma. Now stop whining, and get to work! Puritan protestantism, & free-market capitalism: Everybody can become rich, all you need is a proper attitude, hard work, and some luck. You got this lousy job because you are stupid, lazy, incompetent, poor, and because you have bad luck because God hates you. Now get to work, you serf, otherwise we'll find somebody else to do it!

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Only a loser calls a winner a loser. Your dislike for those who have succeeded more than you and reached for higher goals shows your true colours. The only thing stopping you from succeeding too is yourself, if you envy others for their success, it is due to your own inability and not their ability. One day you will understand what you feel instead of lashing out at others. Babies cry too, when they cut their first teeth, they don't know why they are feeling pain and scream about it. Just because you don't understand why you ended up where you are, and don't like it either, crying is not the solution. It's not THEIR fault for succeeding, it's YOUR fault for not achieving your goals. Sure we all get kicked down and it isn't easy getting to where we WANT to be, but those that keep getting up and fighting back have a better chance of getting there. Those who give up and feel ripped off in life, will always begrudge the others who didn't. P.S. If you knew what you were talking about and I were a troll, I'd post and run; not stick around and participate in ridiculous debates with those such as yourself for over 10 years.

BlueCollarCritic
BlueCollarCritic

'Spoken like a true bottom feeder who feels he will never succeed beyond his current level of employment. Clever!' Wow, you've learned a new skill, sarcasm. I'm unimpressed. Go away troll, no one takes you seriously anymore.

Arcturus909
Arcturus909

I completely agree. To make matters worse, your average FB user does not fully understand privacy settings. Their rants end up publicly available and would possibly appear in Google searches. Even a guy like me who *thinks* he understands privacy settings has had photos in "Friends Only" Photo Albums tagged by people who aren't my friends. So apparently I don'y fully understand the privacy settings and/or they don't work the way they are supposedly designed.

Paymeister
Paymeister

Mr. or Ms. Taylor - I don't mean this disrespectfully: I believe you would be a pleasant and intelligent person to work alongside and have discussions with. But... this issue doesn't involve what you think about companies looking at FaceBook posts. Rather, there was a policy she agreed to. The policy included what she was to do and not do, and the consequences she might expect should she break the rules. She violated the policy, and received the stated consequences. No opinions necessary: she got what she signed for! Now, let's walk away from this particular issue. I agree with you and many of the other posters that words should be listened to rather than quashed, that actions should be taken to address grievances, and intelligent, genteel discussions should be the norm. But if you work for THE MAN, you kinda have to do what he says or you don't work for him very long. I *do* like the idea of having my own business, though. I'm just not that good at it, and will continue to follow THE MAN's rules.

kmoore
kmoore

It is sad when we try to make a distinction with no differences. ?They can file, I can?t.? ?They have money, I don?t.? ?They did it on Monday, I waited until Wednesday.? One unsupported, personal accusation is as bad as another. Ken

Realvdude
Realvdude

I think they were recognizing the authority of the boss, and received respect in return. I'm sure laws are different from place to place and well as employment agreements, though from a educational perspective, it's who initiates the topic of conversation. In the US and many parts of the world, you are allowed to discuss your religous beliefs if someone else asks, such as a student. With both of those thoughts in mind, would you rather have the respect of your boss and have the boss know what they actually could do, or would you throw the law in the bosses face and loose their respect?

JCitizen
JCitizen

Glad I didn't learn forking in Chicago!! HA! ]:)

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

You'd understand that I have taken NO sides here. In fact most, who actually know me around here, know that I generally rally for the employee not the employer. I certainly haven't referred to my personal success or failure in any way shape or form, put it back in your pants and sit down. You need to off the goggles and learn to read without personal bias for once, you MAY retain some credibility. I generally abhor US labour laws, which seem to always protect the employer and persecute the employee. If you slag off the company in public, you can't start crying foul when they cut you loose. What employer in his right mind would let an employee bad mouth them and then write them a paycheck for it? Why do Americans have to stand on one side or another, without any consideration of circumstance before passing judgment. Just because you don't like the capitalism that your nation was built upon, it doesn't mean all employees are always right and all employers are always wrong or vice versa. Middle ground, it's not that scary and you get to actually base decisions on weighing facts instead of simply applying personal prejudice.

JCitizen
JCitizen

that would make an entertaining book! :^0